Banzai Cliff, Paseo eyed as pilot for Flower Island project


The Marianas Visitors Authority is eyeing Banzai Cliff and the Paseo de Marianas in Garapan to begin its “Flower Island” project. In an interview yesterday, MVA managing director Perry Tenorio said they are assessing the application of designs on these two areas.

“We are focusing on those two sites. We know we have a buy-in from the community in increasing the beauty of the CNMI, and we want to show something before we implement everything else,” Tenorio said.

MVA is working with Japanese landscape architect Junichi Inada on the project, according to Tenorio. But they are also sharing Inada’s ideas with local architects or engineers to see if they are applicable to the islands, he said.

“Inada has been to the island many times and brings great ideas to the table but we want to make sure also that whatever we do will last a long time,” he said.

Tenorio cited the “harsh” conditions of the Banzai Cliff area as an example. He said MVA wants to make sure that the plants recommended for the area have a chance to survive.

On the Paseo area, MVA is working with the Saipan Chamber of Commerce on a design, Tenorio said. He added they were initially looking at the whole Garapan area but because there are planned improvements there, they do not want to take the chance of improving a street only to find out that they would have to take it out later.

Is there a time set for when MVA would like to be done with these projects? Tenorio said they are “working on it.”

“We are assessing the application of the design to the particular area and that may take awhile,” he said.

As reported earlier, the flowers Inada would use include Bougainvillea, Cordyline, hibiscus, orchids, and anthurium.

He is eyeing seven zones on island that could be used for the project. These include a “welcome zone” at the airport area, an eco-corridor at the east side, a flower corridor along the west, a paradise zone for Managaha, a flower garden zone for the island’s northside memorials, and a wild flower mountain zone on Mt. Tapochau.

Dennis B. Chan | Reporter
Dennis Chan covers education, environment, utilities, and air and seaport issues in the CNMI. He graduated with a degree in English Literature from the University of Guam. Contact him at

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